| KF8NH)13 Oct 1996 12:53:08 -0400 writes:
| :>Intent. OS/2 (from IBM, not from MS) was, on Day One, "The Integrating
| :>Platform". The idea was to be `a better everything than everything else',
| :>all in one package; witness the effort spent on MDOS and Win-OS/2. This
| :>was also the driving force behind the now defunct "Workplace OS" concept.
| :>IBM has admitted that this was a mistake (while talking about what happened
| :>to "Workplace OS"). They basically said that the market couldn't get a
| :>handle on the idea.
| Ever the excuse of lame marketers towards failure. ("We're just too hip for
| the room.")
Am I to take it that you *really*, *really* want an excuse to dump OS/2?
Or just really, really want a reason to rant? If the latter, let me know
so I know to ignore you. I don't have the spare time to post responses to
whiners. (If the former, just subscribe to the next McGraw-Hill or CMP rag
you see. You'll get more "reasons" than anyone could hope for.)
WorkPlace OS was a microkernel and system services, with multiple personality
modules (APIs/ABIs, user interfaces, etc.). OS/2 was intended to evolve
into this platform. The problem being, only the tech types really appreciate
such an idea; most people didn't believe even seamless Win-OS/2 was possible
until IBM did it, how do you think they'd react to seamless MacOS or AIX on
the same platform?
WPOS was what didn't go over. But it was the vision of OS/2's future, so
when WPOS sank OS/2 needed a new direction. Your argument is with long-term
strategic planners, not marketing.
| :>can capitalize on that strength to push OS/2: where the "Integrating
| :>Platform" got confused looks from potential buyers, everyone knows what an
| :>"Internet Platform" is.
| Well, duh. (Not you, Brandon, *them*, those bozos who haven't figured that out
| *yet*, much less two years ago.) With as much money as IBM had to throw at the
| media, they could have employed topnotch communicators instead of the gassy
Ahem. WPOS was *not* sent through the media. Deliberately.
This may come as a shock to you, despite all of IBM's actions and all their
announcements all the way back to the original announcement for OS/2 1.0,
but OS/2 has always been targeted by IBM primarily at IBM's biggest customers,
*not* at the SOHO market or us computer geek types. (Microsoft had wider
ambitions, but when don't they? And when IBM proved correct, they bailed
out in short order.)
WPOS was presented to --- and, reportedly, shot down by --- not the "media"
who are only useful in attempting to communicate with the market in general,
but directly to the decision makers at the target corporations in the Fortune
100. If it had flown with them, IBM might well have proceeded to the media
to gain general support for it; but if IBM's primary customer base for the
proposed product wasn't interested, IBM wasn't going to waste any more time
or effort on it.
Note that we are not talking about a product, or even a planned product; we
are talking about a concept. It is perfectly reasonable (unless you consider
decision-by-sound-bite "reasonable") to float a concept with its intended
market before presenting it as a product or dedicating resources to it.
With WPOS dead, OS/2 was a product without a "future" (in the sense that it
had nothing to evolve into). This may have contributed to the failure of
PPC OS/2, since it was a step toward the defunct WPOS. Perhaps this lack of
vision is what resulted in PSP going effectively silent until JWT took over
and came up with a new vision for the future of OS/2.
So now we're starting to see the shape of that future --- and I, for one,
am seeing a lot of computer geek types getting their noses rubbed in the
fact that they are *not* the focus and purpose of OS/2. And b*tching about
that rather disillusioning (to them) fact.
Maybe it's time you folks grew up and recognized that if PSP had to depend
on *us* to buy enough OS/2 to keep them afloat, they would have failed long
ago. The Fortune 100 is what keeps OS/2 going, and the Fortune 100 therefore
drives OS/2 development. Not to mention OS/2 marketing.
Do I like not being important to IBM? In one sense, no. In a larger sense,
it is irrelevant: I'm not particularly important to Sybase, Unify, Sun,
Dell, or any other of the companies whose products I use regularly, either.
If their products aren't marketed to me but they do what I need, I use them
without whining about the companies should revolve around me.
OS/2 does what I need. If it should stop doing what I need, I will switch
to something else that does. (Windows 95 and Windows NT don't, so M$ is
out a customer regardless. Speaking of not caring about me as a customer...)